Missouri Revised Statutes Title XI. Education and Libraries § 182.817. Disclosure of library records not required--exceptions--privacy complaints

1. Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law to the contrary, no library, employee or agent of a library, or third party contracted by a library that receives, transmits, maintains, or stores library records shall release or disclose a library record or portion of a library record to any person or persons except:

(1) In response to a written request of the person identified in that record, according to procedures and forms giving written consent as determined by the library;  or

(2) In response to an order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction upon a finding that the disclosure of such record is necessary to protect the public safety or to prosecute a crime.

2. Any person whose privacy is compromised as a result of an alleged violation of this section may file a written complaint within one hundred eighty days of the alleged violation with the office of the attorney general describing the facts surrounding the alleged violation.  Such person may additionally bring a private civil action in the circuit court of the county in which the library is located to recover damages.  The court may, in its discretion, award punitive damages and may award to the prevailing party attorney's fees, based on the amount of time reasonably expended, and may provide such equitable relief as it deems necessary or proper.  A prevailing respondent may be awarded attorney fees under this subsection only upon a showing that the case is without foundation.

3. Upon receipt of a complaint filed in accordance with subsection 2 of this section, the attorney general shall review each complaint and may initiate legal action if deemed appropriate.


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